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  1. The levels were only an issue around Kidlington when I went up and back from Oxford to Heyford in July/Aug. I suspect (at least on the days I went past) it has more to do with mismanagement of locks by boats or leaks from specific locks/pounds as Thrupp levels were fine, but everyone was going aground around Yarnton Lane Bridge (between Kidlington green lock and Roundhams lock). This didn't make much sense as Roundhams is much deeper than Kidlington green so that pound should always be overflowing...unless lots of boats only use Kidlington Green lock and not Roundhams (which isn't the case). I know reservoirs are low but the back pumping from Napton and feeds from the Cherwell seem to be keeping on top of the water supply for now.
  2. Summit pumps have failed again (doesn't say if it is those at Wootton Rivers or Crofton). Does anyone know why they fail so often? Don't remember the last time I saw a notification about Napton or Calcutt or any other back pumps failing, but the K&A Summit ones fail several times each summer it seems?
  3. The canal is river fed from Skipton downwards so rain of any sort will help, even if just briefly to allow limited passage through locks.
  4. Also never had issues at Foxton and Watford. The ones at Napton are a bit useless and don't tend to leave the first/bottom lock.
  5. It will also put some boats off visiting the affected waterway entirely and instead go on another route. Eg people hiring or heading out from their marina in the Braunston area are now likely to avoid the South Oxford, either because they worry about getting trapped when the water completely runs out, or worry about being in a queue at the locks or because they want/need to cruise from dawn to dusk and can't face the thought of having to stop at 2pm if they miss the last entry😅. But either way, restricted lock openings work and definitely are one of the things CRT need to do when there is a drought. Obviously they also need to fix leaks and improve back pumping and reservoir capacity etc.
  6. Restricted lock openings work by deterring some boats from going through the locks at all. Particularly holiday boats that are in a rush to meet a schedule. Claydon locks are a great example, frequently met boats that have gone down those locks to wind before Clattercote and head straight back up. Just because they felt winding at Fenny Compton was "a bit too soon into their trip to turn around".
  7. If they back pumped up the Worcester and Birmingham canal then they could move water from the Severn to the Thames, as they already can back pump from Leamington (which is fed from the Birmingham level) up to Calcutt then Napton up to the Oxford summit, and from there down to the Cherwell. Shouldn't take too much engineering especially as the locks on the Worcester and Birmingham and grouped in flights. However as others said, whether the flow rates to make the supply adequate are achievable is another matter. Maybe they could shut navigation down overnight and pump at a high speed then?
  8. Yes, back pumps all the way up at each lock(s) from Leamington to the Braunston/Napton long pound This is good news, I had hoped the lack of restrictions at Claydon or Napton meant the situation at the top was OK and issues further down were more localised problems than a general lack of water
  9. Obviously if the boat really cannot be portaged then it can't be portaged. Anything that can be clearly should be! Sadly the general public are largely oblivious of things such as saving water and what the weather has even been for the last year. Mentioned the dry weather and low flows to several boaters whilst sharing locks recently and most hadn't a clue
  10. Shut? Or severe restrictions on the locks either side at least. They back pump at Napton and in theory this water can come from as far away as Birmingham summit level via Hatton and Stockton. But everything flowing down towards Oxford is lost. Bigger problems with water further down though as the Cherwell is extremely low and it is the supply for the canal from Aynho onwards. I would hope the fixed weir on the Cherwell at Shipton (around the corner from where the river and canal part) is set so the levels there can't drop below the minimum needed for navigation. Then in theory lock water from higher up can feed the canal here too? Shipton lock was pretty much level when I came through the other day. If the river can drop lower then I can't see how they will avoid shutting the canal there?
  11. I think it flows into both, but the Shroppie is fed by the S&W anyway, the stop lock goes down onto the Shroppie.
  12. Canoes can and should be made to portage at the moment, or the river will be shut completely before Autumn
  13. I meant it was absurd because of the volume of water used given we are in a drought; whether they have paid or not wasn't my point.
  14. I always assumed the feed down the caldon stopped orange water being taken from the other side of the tunnel down towards Stoke locks.
  15. Locking the head gear and gates is exactly what the EA are going to do on the Thames, to prevent people working along at their own pace and instead make them wait and share with as many boats as possible. I don't recall this happening in the last 12 years since I've been boating, and the lock keepers couldn't either...they didn't even know exactly how it would all work. It is absurd that a single canoe can pen through something as huge as Sandford lock!
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